« SebelumnyaLanjutkan »
Angeles. Our membership is made up of 654 men and women representing in excess of 1500 sources of textile and allied products. These sources are located in the New England area, the Mid-northeastern States, the Southeastern States and the Mid-eastern States. It is estimated that our members ship in dollar volume to California soft goods industry in excess of 34 billion dollars a year of textile and allied products. Our members do business with every conceivable user of textile products which would include the apparel industry, the home furnishing industry, the aero-space industry and many manufacturers of industrial textile products. Since our State produces a very minimal source of materials and as pointed out the majority of our sources are two to three thousand miles away from California, our members use all modes of transportation to move their products transcontinentally. These products move in quantitites mak: ing up weights from 10 lbs. to 60,000 lbs. per shipment. However, at this point, it is important to emphasize that while the 60,000 lb. shipments are few and far between, the majority of our shipments move in quantities of less-than-carload lots predominantly made up of 150 lbs. to 500 lbs. per bill of lading.
It is also significant to point out that textile products are more often bulky and take up a greater space in a transport conveyance than do other type raw materials; e.g., the weight of several cartons of textiles could well be replaced by three to four times the weight in hardware items, such as hand tools, or iron bolts or nuts. One could visualize several drums of chemicals weighing three times that of textile shipments using the same cubic space. In other words, there are a number of peculiar qualities distinctively identified with the movement of textile products.
Since early in the 1940's, the freight forwarder has led the fight amongst the modes of transportation to accommodate the unusual qualities of the movements of textile products. It is significant that the majority of our raw products are moving transcontinentally today in the services of the freight forwarder.
During this period of upward spiralling costs, our members are deeply concerned and anxious about their ability to continue to sell their products competitively in the California and west coast markets. The movement of freight is a prime factor in maintaining this competitive position particularly in terms of the western markets vs. the eastern markets where the source is closer to the eastern manufacturer. It is therefore vitally important that modes of transportation remain competitive.
It is vitally important that no discrimination exists between forwarder and motor carrier. A discriminatory freight cost favoring one mode over another could eventually create unfair competition amongst the suppliers using transcontinental carriers. Obviously, if a supplier had access to favorable freight costs he could better sell his product than a supplier with a similar product who could not utilize this same carrier. In such a case I can visualize our member spending long hours searching for a means of remaining competitive if he is to continue to sell his product in the California market. The Act to regulate interstate commerce came into existence with the purpose of protecting the public from such an eventuality.
The freight forwarder, moving freight on a single bill of lading under the Interstate Commerce Act, in less-than-carload quantities is essential to our market. He must be permitted to make contracts with the railroads in the same manner as the motor carrier. Motor carriers who are the chief competitors of the freight forwarder have the right to make contracts with the railroads. Obviously, this gives the motor carrier an unfair competitive advantage over the freight forwarder. Such a condition could be most destructive to our California industries. The economy of the Nation in terms of transportation can only remain healthy providing all modes of transportation are working under equal regulations.
Mr. FRIEDEL. Mr. Pickle?
Mr. Pickle. Does your company, Textile Associates of Los Angeles. classify yourself as a “shipper” or a "shipping association”?
Mr. HANDELSMAN. No, sir. We are an association of textile representatives only. We are an association to help and to work with the textile--individual textile-representatives for our own mutual benefit. We are in no way involved in any product. We are a non-profitmaking association of textile mill representatives and salesmen.
Mr. PICKLE. Under the law, wouldn't you classify yourself as a "shippers' association”!
Mr. HANDELSMAN. No, sir. We do not have a product. We are in no way involved with a product. Our individual members sell textiles and have them shipped to their customers or local stocks, but the Textile Association of Los Angeles has no product to sell or ship.
Mr. PICKLE. You use freight forwarders now as a mode of transportation in preference to other modes?
Mr. HANDELSMAN. Yes. I use it as a representative of textile mills, and most of our members use it as representatives and salesmen of textile mills, but the Textile Association of Los Angeles itself has nothing to do with the movement of freight.
Mr. PICKLE. You didn't read your entire statement. You summarized it. I appreciate that, but I assume that one reason you are in favor of the bill is that it will not only give you extra service, but cheaper rates ?
Mr. HANDELSMAN. That isn't necessarily the reason I am appearing in favor of the bill. Primarily, I am appearing in favor of the bill because the problem of the textile fashion industry is one in which a tremendous amount-practically all our energies are involved in the designing and selling of new fabrics, of fashion fabrics, possibly 2 years in advance of their being available to the public. We are so involved in the actual manufacture, styling, and selling of these fabries that we are trying to eliminate any problem that might exist in moving this product from one place to another.
Right now the competition in our industry is in styling, is in product. It is not in the movement of product, and we want to keep it that way.
Mr. PICKLE. In other words, you are not concerned primarily about what kind of rates you get, what kind of contracts or agreements are reached. All you want is quick service and you think this will give you quick service?
Mr. HANDELSMAN. Correct, sir.
Isn't it true that normally when you ship by rail it is a long haul and a slow movement ?
Mr. HANDELSMAN. It is always by rail, and I have been in this industry on the west coast for 22 years. I have never shipped any
ed any other way than by rail—that is, by freight forwarders--that I can remember.
This primarily means that I do not have to look for a shipper. When I have a shipment coming to me, all I do is order it from my home office. They contact the various mills or printing plants, which can be in any small town on the east coast, and they ship it directly to me, and I don't have to look for that shipment.
Mr. PICKLE. If you ship now almost exclusively by rail, how is this bill going to give you quicker service? How is it going to help you?
Mr. HANDELSMAN. This bill will make the freight forwarder and the motor carrier equal as to the service they can give me and the people I represent. Therefore, we will not have to look for shippers or shipping costs and services as a competitive factor.
Mr. PICKLE. Are you saying that if we pass the bill this might create such competition that the carrier then would be able to ship it faster to you than by rail ?
Mr. HANDELSMAN. Not necessarily faster, but in the overall picture they might have an opportunity to drive the freight forwarder to such a position that he doesn't, or he isn't able to give us the service he is giving us now, and then we would have to go out and look for somebody to pick up some small shipment, which might be 150 pounds in some small community in Tennessee, and we just cannot be involved in that type of competition.
Mr. PICKLE. Mr. Chairman, that is all I have.
Mr. Adams. I have a problem with the idea we are going to avoid the regular rate structure and set up a special contract basis of rates. I heard you say several times you wanted to make the freight forwarder equal with the trucker in making special contracts with the railroads.
As I understand it, the only contract that can be made at the present time would be that type of operation. Under plan 1 there are only certain points where the trucker can obtain the rate, to points where he has a certificate of necessity. There was a plan that was set up for a while, and that gave special contract rights to freight forwarders and others, which were, in the opinion of the ICC anyway, lower than, and not competitive with, what they were giving to the truckers.
At the present time this bill is not to give the freight forwarders the right to carry just between where truckers can presently serve, but across the whole board, which would mean that you would establish a special category of contracts outside of the published rates that would be noncompetitive with the truckers.
So I don't follow your conclusion that this is to make them equal. Mr. HANDELSMAN. The truckers now also have that opportunity.
Mr. Adams. Under what plan or basis do they have an open special contract rate?
Mr. HANDELSMAN. I don't think I could answer that particular question.
Mr. Adams. I don't think you can, because I don't think they do. The second point with it is that truckers and railroads are competitive as carriers. A railroad would be cutting off its nose to spite its face to offer a rate to a trucker which is in competition with it, that is superior to what they would give to a freight forwarder.
On the other hand, to give to a freight forwarder or to a shipping association, which would be in competition with the trucker, a specialized rate outside of the published tariff would upset what we presently have, and that is what I hope witnesses will be addressing themselves to.
I don't see they are going to change the railroads at all, or change the truckers at all, or change the pickup services at all.
It seems to me that in this bill we are going to slice up the pie a little differently among whoever is there. Isn't that right?
Mr. HANDELSMAN. It is very difficult for me to answer a question of that sort, because I am basically not a freight man. I am sure that there will be others who can answer that.
Mr. Adams. I won't belabor it, then. I will wait for somebody else.
Mr. HLANDELSMAX. A truckload of fabric, you mean, sir?
Mr. HANDELSMAN. I would consider a carload would be approximately 60,000 pounds.
Mr. KUYKENDALL. What is the maximum amount you may ship by freight forwarder?
Mr. HANDELSMAN. I have never reached that point. Mr. KUYKENDALL. You say 60,000 pounds? Mr. HANDELSMAN. As a full carload shipment, but I have never shipped a full carload shipment. Mr. KUYKENDALL. What is the largest amount you have shipped ?
Mr. HANDELSMAN. I think my largest shipment at one time was approximately 6,000 pounds, but I may have as many as 10 different shipments on any one day.
Mr. KUYKENDALL. Is it your understanding that a truck forwarder may accept a full truckload?
Mr. HANDELSMAN. That situation has never come up. I have never been refused the picking up of a shipment or the delivery of a shipment by a freight forwarder.
Mr. KUYKENDALL. But you don't know how much they consider a carload or truckload ?
Mr. HANDELSMAN. No, sir. It has never come up.
Mr. PICKLE. Our next witness is Mr. Anthony George, who represents Georges Carriers, Inc., of New York. Is Mr. George here? (No response.) Mr. PICKLE. I call next, then, to the witness stand Mr. J. R. Evans, traffic manager, National Lock Co., Rockford, Ill.
I assume that these gentlemen will file statements. The next witness will be Mr. Charles B. Ratliff, representing the Morven Freight Lines, Inc., of Morven, N.C.
Is Mr. Ratliff here? (No response.)
Mr. PICKLE. We are making considerable progress while I am chairman.
Mr. FRIEDEL. Our last witness will be Mr. Harold H. Stevens, general traffic manager, Carstensen Freight Lines, Inc., Clinton, Iowa.
All right, gentlemen, we are still in session and we are liable to call any minute, so the meeting will stand adjourned until tomorrow morning at 10 o'clock.
(Whereupon, at 2:50 p.m. the committee adjourned, to reconvene at 10 a.m., Wednesday, January 24, 1968.)